Hispanics are one of the government's target populations because a greater percentage of Hispanic households view TV over-the-air compared with the general population.
The announcement of the so-called Escuadrón Digital, or Digital Squad, came the same day the company was saluted for its DTV-education efforts at a Hill hearing on the DTV transition. On Monday, the broadcaster received a Service to America award from the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation for its DTV-education campaign, the first to target Hispanic viewers when it launched last October.
The new phase will be a grassroots effort combining on-air with "street teams" that will reach out to the community -- particularly seniors and selected homes -- for one-on-one sessions on the digital switch and how it will affect Spanish-language viewers. The teams will also demonstrate how to set up DTV-to-analog converter boxes that will allow analog-only homes to still receive TV pictures after the Feb. 17, 2009, switch.